Lifespan: April 1978 - October 1981, January 1986 - March 1989, September 2001 - September 2002 (Not covered)
Host: Jim Perry, Bob Eubanks, Bill Rafferty
Announcer: Gene Wood, Jack Narz, Charlie O'Donnell, Johnny Olson, Jay Stewart, Bob Hilton
Produced by: Mark Goodson and Bill Todman (1978-1981), Mark Goodson Productions (1986-1989)
Front Game Rules
||Two players compete. First, the host asks a question posed to 100 people. (Ex. "We asked 100 women - Have you ever gotten down on your knees and begged a man not to leave?) One player gives their numerical guess, while the other player says if s/he think the answer is higher or lower than that number. If correct, that player gets to play his/her cards first. Otherwise, the player who gave the numerical answer goes to the cards.
||Each player is responsible for their own line of 5 cards. The object of the game is to get through the entire line by calling cards higher or lower than the card before them. Players can freeze at any time to protect their progress, but if a mistake is made the player loses all of the cards won on that turn and the other player gets to play his/her cards. The winner of the toss-up can also change the base card if it doesn't look good. Each game is worth $100, two games wins the match. The third game is a tiebreaker with only three cards.
End Game - "The Money Cards"
||In the Money Cards, a player begins with $200, which they can wager on another set of cards by calling them higher or lower. After 3 cards have been played, the player receives another $200 (in Perry's version) or $400 (In Eubanks'). The last card is called the Big Bet, and there the player must bet at least half their score (minimum bets were $50 everywhere else). Along the way, the player has the opportunity to change his/her cards. In Perry's version, the player could change the first card on any line, while Eubanks' version allowed you to change one card on each line.
||In the Eubanks run, two different games were played after the Money Cards to try for a new car. In the first version, a player tried to place one or more Jokers (one was given as a freebie, three others were shuffled into the Money Cards) in front of seven possible cards. One read "CAR," the others read "NO". If the player covered the card that said "CAR," s/he won the car. In the second version, the player tried to guess how many out of 10 specific audience members answered yes to a specific question. If exactly right, s/he won the car. If off by one, the player won $500.
During the Perry run, each show began with a short poem regarding the game, such as "Aces high, Deuces low, Play ir right and win the dough!" Later during the run, the poems were sent it by members of the viewing audience. Those who had their poems read on the air would have their name mentioned. But be warned: If Jim didn't like the poem, he'd let you know... in front of millions of people.
Loogaroo Looks it Over
I don't know what it is, but there's some kind of mystique about this show that gravitates us game show fans to it. Perhaps it's the interesting questions. Maybe it's the simplicity of the gameplay. Or it might be the hosting performances Perry and Eubanks. Nevertheless, this show is a classic. I favor Perry's version a little more because the set looked neater (especially those face-card turntables) and Jim's hosting style added a little suspense into the game. However, I also have to give the Eubanks version credit for having more variety in its questions and less confusing rules during the Money Cards. In both shows, the excitement and play-along aspects are developed to top form. This is a show I'd love to see come back (and considering how Pearson TV has shown interest in this game, it might have a shot).
Card Sharks (Perry's version)
Gameplay: 2 pts.
Host: 3 pts.
Presentation: 2 pts.
Execution: 2 pts.
Total Score: 9 pts.
Card Sharks (Eubanks' version)
Gameplay: 3 pts.
Host: 2 pts.
Presentation: 1 pt.
Execution: 2 pts.
Total Score: 8 pts.
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Front Game: MATINEE
End Game: CAFETERIA
Audience Participation: WATCH